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The Crimson

The student news site of Bernards High School

The Crimson

The student news site of Bernards High School

The Crimson

The release of Taylor Swift’s “Midnights” album pleases fans

Ava Highland
Swift’s new “Midnights” album premiers on Spotify on October 21st

While accepting her award at the 2022 MTV Video Music Awards, Taylor Swift shocked fans with the announcement of her new album that would be released on October 21.

In an Instagram post following the announcement of “Midnights,” Swift explained, “This is a collection of music written in the middle of the night, a journey through terrors and sweet dreams…hoping that just maybe, when the clock strikes twelve… we’ll meet ourselves.”

In 2021 Swift released her first two re-recorded albums, “Fearless (Taylor’s Version)” and “Red (Taylor’s Version).” It was then anticipated, and hinted at, that Swift would re-recorded the other four albums, that she does not have ownership over, before any brand new music.

Swift is known to drop hints about upcoming announcements, and over the past year all signs pointed towards the release of “1989 (Taylor’s Version)” or “Speak Now (Taylor’s Version).”

Though the announcement came as a shock, it was an exciting one at that. Theories quickly circulated on social media, especially concerning possible collaborations on the album and what stories the album would tell.

Over the course of several weeks, Swift released the titles of each song at midnight; An exciting way to keep fans on the edge of their seats leading up to the release.

With an upbeat, pop sound, the album still dives deep into all the emotions faced at midnight. Frustration, anger, love, revenge, admiration. Swift provides a song for every occasion.

The album focuses closely on Swift’s internal conflicts, rather than those that have taken place publicly. Swift expressed a part of herself that is not often shown in her music. She has taken a different approach than each of her previous albums, “Midnights” as a whole sounding like a combination of her albums Reputation, Lover and 1989; Regarding both the lyrics and instrumentation.

Upon receiving Billboard’s Woman of the Decade Award in 2019, Swift said, “She [Lana Del Ray] was ruthlessly criticized in her early career and then slowly but surely she turned into, in my opinion, the most influential artist in pop.”

Swift continued, “Her vocal stylings, her lyrics, her aesthetics, they’ve been echoed and repurposed in every corner of music.”

A collaboration between the two has been highly anticipated, however it did not live up to all its expectations. While the song itself ranks high out of them all, the collaboration only featured Lana Del Ray as backup vocals.

After being given three hours to take in the album Swift dropped her “chaotic” announcement. At 3am Swift released the deluxe edition of the album, “Midnights (3am Edition),” featuring an additional seven songs. While speculations of a possible sister album announcement circulated, the deluxe edition’s songs still lived up to the same high expectations of the original album.

The album as a whole does not tell one story, instead a collection of relatable feelings and conflicts inspired late at night. To go through each of the twenty songs and unravel their true meanings would go far beyond the length of this article, however some songs took fans back to some of Swift’s previous eras and exceeded expectations.

Before the release track 7, “Question…?,” was thought of with lower expectations than several of the other tracks, however it certainly proved those expectations wrong. Swift begins the song explaining that she is a “good girl” to a “sad boy” in “big city” making “wrong choices.” Swift questions what actually ended the relationship and searches for an explanation rather than just the “miscommunications.”

Track 8, “Vigilante Sh*t,” and track 11, “Karma,” transported fans back to the Reputation era with the lyrics and a sound being similar to “Look What You Made Me Do” and “This Is Why We Can’t Have Nice Things.” Both songs are from the album “Reputation.” Both songs circled around the ideas of revenge, hard truths and of course, karma. In the song “Karma,” Swift is finally able to sit back and relax knowing that those who ridiculed and picked her apart time and time again, have karma coming their way.

Swift also took listeners back to the album “Lover” with clear tributes to Joe Alwyn, Swift’s boyfriend of six years. “Lavender Haze,” the title of the album’s opening song, is a “Common phrase used in the 50’s” used to describe being in love…[and an] all encompassing love glow.”

A grown up and evolved version of “Red” from the album “Red (Taylor’s Version)” is track 2, “Maroon.” Swift used colors as a metaphor for different aspects of a relationship and carried this theme through “Maroon.”

In Swift’s Instagram and Twitter post just minutes after the release she gave a special shoutout to Jack Antonoff, “This is our first album we’ve done with just the two of us as main collaborators… Jack and I found ourselves back in New York, alone, recording every night, staying up late and exploring old memories and midnights past.” This iconic duo has created incredible music on several of Swift’s previous albums, and they have done it once again for “Midnights.”

Swift has made it impossible to choose the best song, and the new angle she took on this album displays her maturity and growth since her debut album in 2006.

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